The Kennel Club, a pivotal authority in dog breeding, has announced significant changes in its accepted DNA testing laboratories. This move aims to adapt to the evolving landscape of genetic testing within the industry.
Maintaining the accuracy of DNA test results is paramount for The Kennel Club’s database integrity and the guidance offered to breeders, the organisation explained. A “meticulous consultation process” has led to the establishment of rigorous criteria that all laboratories, new as well as existing, must meet for their DNA tests to gain acceptance.
The Crucial Role of Accurate DNA Testing
The outlined criteria demand the following:
- Certification of current and valid ISO accreditation for testing and calibration, or an equivalent quality assurance certification from an independent monitoring body (excluding university-hosted laboratories).
- Participation or leadership sponsorship in the Harmonisation of Genetic Testing for Dogs project by the International Partnership for Dogs.
- Provision of a comprehensive test list with mutation details to ensure accurate recording of intended genetic variants, minimizing discrepancies that could lead to incorrect hereditary status assignment.
Joanna Ilska, a Canine Geneticist at The Kennel Club, emphasised the significance of this process, stating, “Implementing the new acceptance criteria guarantees consistently high-quality work from the laboratories whose results we record. This ensures accurate records and upholds best practices, supporting breeders.”
The Kennel Club has contacted all laboratories regarding these changes. Though some responses are pending, efforts persist to engage with every laboratory affected. Ilska added, “Laboratories not included in the revised list still retain the opportunity to reapply at any time.”
A grace period has been extended until the end of 2023 for laboratories previously accepted but absent from the revised list. However, starting January 1 2024, results from these laboratories will no longer find acceptance in The Kennel Club’s database.
For detailed information and the list of approved laboratories, visit The Kennel Club’s official website.